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Roscrea and Newbridge go to replay after Leinster Schools semi-final draw

Belvedere will have to wait to learn who their opponents in the final will be.

Newbridge College 8

Cistercian College Roscrea 8

Eoghan Maher and Brian Diffley tackle Jimmy O'Brien Captain Jimmy O'Brien was electric in the centre for Newbridge. Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

ROSCREA AND NEWBRIDGE will replay their Leinster Schools Senior Cup semi-final after a tense 8-8 draw at Donnybrook.

The replay has been scheduled for Monday, 9 March at 16.00 and will again take place in Donnybrook.

The Kildare school finished this game deep in the Roscrea 22, but couldn’t force their way over for a winning score that would have been unfair to Pieter Swanepoel’s side.

Newbridge enjoyed a deserved 8-0 lead at the break, although Roscrea’s lauded and visibly heavier pack became more prominent in the second half to reel it back, the likes of Munster U18 Clubs prop Dylan Murphy and flanker Mattie Keane showing their power.

The Offaly/Tipperary school had been frustrated by the game management of Newbridge out-half Tim Murphy in the first half, struggling to get out of their defensive zones after an initial flurry of attack.

Meanwhile, Newbridge captain Jimmy O’Brien and outside centre Jake Howlett were a constant menace with their running and passing games in midfield.

Roscrea went close to scoring in the opening minutes, earning a five-metre lineout but then knocking-on to allow Newbridge to relieve the pressure. Having cleared their lines, the Kildare school then pounced on a Roscrea error in clinical fashion.

An overthrow at the lineout from Roscrea saw Newbridge regather possession on their 22-metre line, from where O’Brien conjured a magnificent show-and-go break to race 50 metres upfield before feeding midfield partner Howlett.

The Newbridge 13 had no problem finishing close to the posts, although the conversion from scrum-half Colm Doyle was wide to leave it at 5-0.

Cistercian College Roscrea students cheer on their school The support at Donnybrook was as passionate as ever. Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

Roscrea replied with more pressure five metres out from the Newbridge line, but again the defensive effort was excellent, led by busy lock Brian Larkin.

Doyle extended the Newbridge lead to 8-0 with a penalty in the 16th minute after the otherwise impressive Roscrea number eight Dan Trayers, a Connacht U19 representative, was penalised for not supporting his own body weight on a turnover attempt.

Ireland Schools international O’Brien continued to threaten with ball in hand for Newbridge, while halfback pairing Doyle and Murphy kept Roscrea pinned back in their own half with some intelligent and precise kicking.

Coming towards the break, Doyle had another penalty chance when Roscrea came offside chasing an Alan Tynan garryowen, but from 40 metres out the shot at goal dropped short.

The Roscrea pack came thundering out for the second half, building pressure on the Newbridge tryline and eventually earning a penalty for Ireland Schools-capped centre Tim Foley to slot.

Though O’Brien sparked twice for Newbridge, Swanepoel’s forwards ground away and then fullback Tim Carroll applied huge pressure on kick chase to force Newbridge into tapping the ball into touch just metres from their line.

A minute later, Roscrea scrum-half Keith Kavanagh sniped over from following a threatening maul by his forwards, Foley’s conversion unsuccessful.

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Keith Kavanagh is tackled by Jordan Duggan Roscrea scrum-half Keith Kavanagh scored his side's try. Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

Tighthead prop Murphy competed ferociously at the breakdown and carried well for Roscrea, as did Keane and lock Fineen Wycherly, in part affording Foley another shot at goal with 62 minutes played.

From a hugely demanding position wide on the left and 35 metres out, Foley’s attempt fell short. Replacement wing Joe Murphy thought he’d scored minutes later in the left corner, but the assistant referee ruled it out for a foot in touch.

Newbridge finally lifted the siege heading into the final minutes, Murphy producing a clever linebreak to take them back into the Roscrea 22. They turned down the chance to kick into the corner from a five-metre penalty, instead playing off a scrum, but Roscrea refused to concede again and this tie heads for a replay.

Roscrea scorers:

Tries: Keith Kavanagh

Conversions: Tim Foley [0 from 1]

Penalties: Tim Foley [1 from 2]

Newbridge scorers:

Tries: Jake Howlett

Conversions: Colm Doyle [0 from 1]

Penalties: Colm Doyle [1 from 2]

ROSCREA: Tim Carroll; Daniel Keane, Rob Wharton (Philip O’Shea ’69), Tim Foley (capt.), Sean Kilgallen (Joe Murphy ’50); Alan Tynan, Keith Kavanagh; Liam Walsh, Eoghan Maher, Dylan Murphy; Fineen Wycherley, Aaron Browne (Peter Gavin ’59); Simon Meagher (Brian Diffley ’50), Mattie Keane (Kyle Cahir ’64), Dan Trayers.

Replacements not used: Paddy McKeon, Michael Jordan, John Teahan Bourke.

NEWBRIDGE: Mark Delaney; Ruairí Cleary, Jake Howlett, Jimmy O’Brien (capt.), Colm Stapleton; Tim Murphy, Colm Doyle; Jordan Duggan, Conor Johnson, David Breen; Mike Joyce (Dylan Walker ’64), Brian Larkin; Tom O’Neill, Robert Buckley (Austin Mahony ’64), Patrick Ryan (Robert Culliton ’64).

Replacements not used: William Jennings, Oisin Larkin, Patrick Morrin, David Culliton, David Murphy.

Referee: Gary Conway.

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About the author:

Murray Kinsella

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